Al-Ahram Weekly On-line
8 - 14 October 1998
Issue No.398
Published in Cairo by AL-AHRAM established in 1875 Current issue | Previous issue | Site map

Suez dancers

Suez celebrates 'Joys of Victory'

By Mahmoud Bakr

Suez celebrates 'Joys of Victory'

By Mahmoud Bakr

The governorate of Suez was well-prepared to make the most of the commemoration of the historic war that took place on its shores 25 years ago. The Ismail Yassin Theatre was the venue for the first event on the itinerary, which took place on 1 October under the banner: "The Joys of Victory". The hall was packed with Suez City VIPs, including Governor General Mamdouh El-Zohiery and Mustapha El-Razzaz, head of the Culture Palaces Authority which organised the event.

The armed forces were an integral part of the evening, which included fireworks and engaging performances from popular arts troupes from all over the country.

The highlight of the evening, however, was an awards ceremony, during which Governor El-Zohiery, General Sobhi Abdel-Latif Ayad, head of the third brigade, and poet Ahmed Fouad Nigm were presented with a "Knight of Culture" medal. Certificates of appreciation were given to Mohamed Awad from the Arab Sinai Organisation, Captain Ghazali, a symbol of the popular resistance movement in Suez, and actors Hussein El-Sherbini and Mahmoud Hemieda.

Warm feelings of patriotism were kindled throughout the evening and reached a climax when Nigm described the 1967 defeat as the beginning of the "Egyptian Story": a story that told the world that this is a nation that refuses to die and will always have more to give.

Nigm took the opportunity to remember Sheikh Imam, with whom he had composed songs and poetry for the national resistance movement. This recollection inspired Ahmed El-Ghazali -- the Captain -- to sing to the assembled company.

These central events were complemented by a number of others, including two art exhibitions, one recalling the past, the other embracing the future. The first, on the theme of memories of the resistance, includes the work of artists from the Suez Canal area and Sinai focusing on their experiences under occupation. The second exhibition, entitled "Young Dreams for Continuing Victories", includes works from children around the country and expresses their aspirations for Egypt's future.

Hossam El-Sherif, head of the public relations department at the Suez Governorate, told Al-Ahram Weekly that to mark the occasion, the Oyoun Musa springs in Sinai will be open to the public for free during October. The governorate will provide free transportation to the site, in collaboration with the armed forces. It will also mark the anniversary by covering the costs of a hundred medical operations and inaugurating several schools, clinics and social centres.

On 9 October, there will be a military parade in the city, including an air show. The latter will be followed on 22 October by a live re-enactment of the 40th Brigade Battle, which will be filmed.